Dragon Boat Festival, also known as Duanwu Festival, is a traditional and important celebration in China. It was celebrated this pass weekend on the 7th June (Friday). China had 3 days of holiday from Friday 7th of June to Sunday 9th of June 2019.

How Did Dragon Boat Festival Start?

There are many legends about the origin of the Dragon Boat Festival. The most popular one is in commemoration of Qu Yuan.

Qu Yuan (340–278 BC) was a patriotic poet and exiled official during the Warring States Period of ancient China.

He drowned himself in the Miluo River on the 5th day of the 5th Chinese lunar month, when his beloved Chu State fell to the State of Qin.Local people desperately tried to save Qu Yuan or recover his body, to no avail.

In order to commemorate Qu Yuan, every fifth day of the fifth lunar month people beat drums and paddle out in boats on the river as they once did to keep fish and evil spirits away from his body.

Traditional Dragon Boat Festival food

Eating Sticky Rice Dumplings called Zongzi is the most traditional Dragon Boat Festival food. It is related to Qu Yuan commemoration, as the legend says that lumps of rice were thrown into the river to stop fish eating his drowned body.

They are a kind of sticky rice dumpling made of glutinous rice filled with meats, beans, and other fillings.

Zongzi is wrapped in triangle or rectangle shapes in bamboo or reed leaves, and tied with soaked stalks or colorful silky cords.

The flavors of zongzi are usually different from one region to another across China.

Happy Dragon Boat Festival to everyone celebrating it, wishing everyone well and back to work on Monday 10th June.